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Afghanistan considers that Pakistan holds significant influence over Taliban, who are believed to launch attacks from bases in the country

Dernbach takes final wicket as England seal Twenty20 series win over Pakistan

Peerless Pietersen sets up series victory

England 129-6 Pakistan 124-6 (England win by five runs)

Andrew Strauss endured a 3-0 Test series thrashing by Pakistan

After topsy-turvy tour Strauss faces an acid test in Sri Lanka

England flopped in Tests despite their No 1 ranking and swept a one-day series Pakistan were expected to win. Questions remain for captain and squad

Pietersen hit an unbeaten 62

Imperious Pietersen earns England series win

Kevin Pietersen's continued good form helped England to a thrilling five-run victory and 2-1 Twenty20 series success over Pakistan to conclude their tough tour of the United Arab Emirates tonight.

England's women celebrate

England women seal whitewash

England Women wrapped up a 4-0 series triumph after winning their final Twenty20 match against New Zealand by five wickets in Invercargill. New Zealand made 109 for six, Anya Shrubsole and Georgia Elwiss taking two wickets each. England reached their target with seven balls to spare for a whitewash of the completed matches – Saturday's fourth rubber was washed out.

Match-winner Jonny Bairstow hits one of his two sixes on his way to a maiden England half-century

Bairstow belts England best to level series

Yorkshireman's composed knock leaves Pakistan with too much to do despite Afridi's late flurry

Jonny Bairstow stars as England level series

Jonny Bairstow's maiden international half-century carried England to a series-levelling 38-run win in tonight's second Twenty20 match against Pakistan at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

England spinner Graeme Swann relaxes in Dubai yesterday

England look for the power and the glory

Advice about power hitting in tight situations was in greater supply yesterday than bail-out funds to Greece.

Graeme Swann in action against Pakistan

England prepare Twenty20 comeback against Pakistan

England were today digesting the disappointment of their opening defeat in the three-match Twenty20 series against Pakistan, and planning already how they can come back to win 2-1.

Brilliant bowling at the end from Umar Gul accounted for England

Gul's lethal death bowling squeezes life out of England

At long last, the Dubai International Cricket Stadium was almost full and rocking. Twenty20 was back in town last night: a crazy game for a crazy place.

England take on Pakistan in the first Twenty20 match of the series

Gul gives Pakistan the lead

England succumbed to Umar Gul in tonight's eight-run defeat, as Graeme Swann's career-best bowling again proved in vain against Pakistan at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

Steve Finn celebrates capturing the wicket of Pakistan’s Mohammad Hafeez on Saturday

Finn spearheads formidable attack

Kevin Pietersen drew most of the plaudits on Saturday, his unbeaten 111 instrumental in steering England to a series victory with a match remaining. It was the his first limited-overs century in more than three years, but his feats should not be allowed to divert attention from the magnificent quality of England's bowling.

Vitali Klitschko takes a break from training in the Tyrol; 'The training camp for me is like a vacation,' he says

Boxing: Klitschko is ready to unleash his political clout

Ukrainian faces 10th defence of his heavyweight crown against Britain's Chisora but these days his mind is more on fighting for democracy in his homeland

Michael Clarke made an unbeaten 329

Michael Clarke makes history as Australia take complete charge against India

Australia captain Michael Clarke made history at the SCG to leave India fighting to avoid defeat in the second Test.

Pattinson impressed with the ball for Australia

Australia take charge against India in second Test

An unbeaten 79-run stand between Michael Clarke and Ricky Ponting left Australia in a strong position after their in-form pace attack skittled India for 191 on a dramatic opening day at the SCG.

Andrew Strauss during day one of the Fourth Test match between England and India at the Oval on 18 August

Ten people who changed the world: Andrew Strauss, cricketer who set new standards for English sport

Whether in the cut-throat field of politics or the fashion industry's corridors of power, this year they left our planet a better place. Celebrate 10 of the best, nominated by Independent writers

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News
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Arts and Entertainment
Keys to success: Andrew and Julian Lloyd Webber
arts + entsMrs Bach had too many kids to write the great man's music, says Julian Lloyd Webber
Voices
Left: An illustration of the original Jim Crowe, played by TD Rice Right: A Couple dressed as Ray and Janay Rice
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By performing as African Americans or Indians, white people get to play act a kind of 'imaginary liberation', writes Michael Mark Cohen

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Arts and Entertainment
Hand out press photograph/film still from the movie Mad Max Fury Road (Downloaded from the Warner Bro's media site/Jasin Boland/© 2014 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.)
films'You have to try everything and it’s all a process of elimination, but ultimately you find your path'
Arts and Entertainment
Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter films
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New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site this morning

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Russia Today’s new UK channel began broadcasting yesterday. Discussions so far have included why Britons see Russia as ‘the bad guy’
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New UK station Russia Today gives a very bizarre view of Britain

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Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy

Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Benedict Cumberbatch at the premiere of The Imitation Game at the BFI London Film Festival
filmsKeira Knightley tried to miss The Imitation Game premiere to watch Bake Off
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The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

Paul Scholes column

Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes